Kiribati, Christmas Islands is the first well-known place to experience New Year's day. The first major cities to enjoy New Year are Wellington, New Zealand (hi Malia), and Sydney, Australia (hi Blair).
In order to prepare for geocaching, I bought the Idiot's Guide to Geocaching and a GPS receiver, the Garmin GPSMAP 60CS, which has a special geocaching mode. With any luck, I'll be ready to hunt down some caches next week. Shortly after that, I'll start hiding some caches of my own.
I finally received the DVDs for part 2 of the 6th season of Sex and the City. Last night, I watched the entire last 8 episodes and they were great. The DVD set also includes three alternative endings, which I won't disclose here. IMHO, the ending that was chosen was the best and the most believable. In my heart of hearts, I think that Big finally realized that Carrie was the one, and that they lived happily ever after. Anyhow, the Sex and the City trivia question that I came up with is this: what is the last word that Carrie says at the end of the series? I will be impressed by anyone who gets the correct answer!
There's a new sport in town, and it's called geocaching. You can play as a hider or a seeker. To be a hider, you create a cache by purchasing a waterproof container and filling it with a camera, a log book, and several inexpensive trinkets. Then you find a good place to bury it, note its position using a GPS receiver, and upload its coordinates to the geocaching site. To be a seeker, you visit the geocaching site, pick a set of coordinates, locate the cache, take a photo of yourself using the camera, add yourself to the log book, take a trinket of your choice, add a new trinket of your own, then bury the cache again for others to find. After a while, the hider retrieves the cache and uploads its associated pictures and log book to the web site. If you want to see which caches are near to your own location, visit the cache seeker page. I plan on playing geocaching in January, both as a seeker and a hider. When I hide a cache, I'll also post the GPS coordinates to my blog.
I don't watch much TV, but when I do, my favorite cable channel is BBC America. If you get the urge to watch some jolly good British TV, I highly recommend Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares, Kumars at No. 42, and Coupling. None of these programs really has any equivalent in America; this is leading-edge UK entertainment!
I'd like to welcome my good friend Jodi Williams to the blogsphere! She is a vibrant, high-energy Californian girl with a great sense of humor and a quirky mind. If you enjoy pondering questions that you would rarely think of yourself, I recommend visiting her site. Warning: attempting to answer the first four questions on her first post might take you several hours!
I thought it would be fun to share a plot that I've been mulling over for a few years about a war between Earth and Mars. It's based on a pattern which seems to repeat throughout history, namely that a rebel group leaves its motherland to settle a new colony, only to be hassled by the motherland until it establishes its independence via war. For example, the Pilgrim Fathers left the UK to found the US, and established its independence after the Boston Tea Party.
In my story, it's the year 2050, when genetic engineering, space flight, and computer technology are far more advanced than they are now. It's within mankind's grasp to modify humans significantly, enhancing basic abilities with a combination of genetic therapy and computer implants. However, for a variety of political and religious reasons, most powers such as the US, China and Europe ban such radical re-engineering.
A group of rich, powerful, and free-thinking individuals get together and form their own independent effort to form a colony on Mars, far from the repressive influence of Earth. They develop and implement the changes necessary to create "Homo Superior", or "Humanity 2.0" if you prefer. Over a period of twenty years, the colony successfully creates a new kind of human that excels in virtually all respects relative to traditional humans.
During this time, tension builds up between Earth and Mars, with Earth feeling increasingly threatened by the promise of the "new humans", and Mars worrying that the Earth will pre-emptively shut down their colonies before they can start flexing their technological muscle. This tension culminates in a war between Earth and Mars, effectively representing the evolutionary struggle for dominance between Humanity 1.0 and Humanity 2.0.
What's the result of the war? Well, you'll have to stay tuned for part 2 of this blog entry!